Agrippina, Ancient Rome, Emperor Tiberius, Germanicus, Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso, Martina, Munatia Plancina, poem, poetry, Syria, Tiberius
Germanicus, pride of the Roman Empire,
Was brought down by Piso, a treacherous liar,
Who schemed with his missus, Munatia Plancina,
To kill him with poison. Accomplice Martina,
The poisoner, slyly she used belladonna.
Germanicus, very soon, he was a goner.
(Martina would later be found stiff and cold,
For she knew too much and so wouldn’t grow old)
In Syria, (that’s where the crime was committed)
Germanicus had against Piso been pitted,
And Piso, egged on by the evil Plancina,
Who hated Germanicus and Agrippina
His wife, knew Germanicus just had to go,
And so was the great Roman General laid low.
With unseemly haste there were huge celebrations
As Piso, Plancina, their friends and relations,
They sacrificed, partied, sent thanks to the gods.
(They really were quite reprehensible sods)
Tiberius, Piso considered inferior
To his noble family, and also that Syria
Was his now to govern, (he had been in charge there)
So sought to invade it, his power to enlarge there.
Tiberius, (some say he had been conspiring
With Piso) in Rome, now of Piso was tiring,
For though overjoyed, (with Germanicus dead)
He heard the crowd calling: “Give us Piso’s head!”
And so came to Piso a message from home:
“Piso and Plancina – you’re wanted in Rome.”
And there, by The Senate, Piso and Plancina
Were tried. Soon on suicide Piso grew keener
For he knew Tiberius wanted him dead;
A sword sliced his throat, and to death, Piso bled.
His wife was acquitted. (Said Livia: “Save her!”)
Tiberius Caesar, he never forgave her –
When Livia died, had Plancina retried.
She opened her veins – thus the last killer died.
Or was there another? A tale most mysterious
Of Piso, Plancina, Martina…… Tiberius?